Your home is equipped with a furnace to keep you toasty during those cold Colorado winters. However, there are components of your home’s heating and cooling systems that must be maintained if you want to get maximum efficiency. Most of us are guilty of ignoring the air filter in our furnace, but doing so leads to dire consequences, including heightened energy costs, damaging HVAC equipment, and harming indoor air quality.
Particles floating through the air, which are microscopic, are captured by the filter. From pet dander to skin flakes to residue from cooking, these items are floating in your house right now. With people coming over in the winter and spending more time indoors, there are even more particles in the air.
Why Does It Matter?
The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors encourages their inspectors to look at a home’s furnace and how well the air filter is changed out. When the heat pump or furnace does not have a filter changed regularly, those particles back up into the system and clog the machinery.
If you are selling your home, be aware that the buyer’s inspector will certainly look at your air filter and how dirty your HVAC system is — indicating how well you care for it.
5 Things That Could Happen if You Do Not Change It
1. You Spend More on Energy
You may notice that your heating bill in those CO winters starts to rise. Regardless if your home feels warm and cozy, your furnace is working as if it is keeping it hot 24/7. A dirty air filter increases the run time of your HVAC system, which means more energy consumed.
2. Air Conditioners Run Longer and Clog
Also, your air conditioning unit relies on the air filter. When you have dust that settles onto the flat surface, it forces the particles into crevices and components. The longer these particles remain, the more clogged the system gets — significantly reducing the lifespan of your air conditioner.
3. It Takes Longer to Reach Temperatures
When the air must penetrate a clogged and dirty filter, you will notice that it takes much longer for your home to reach the right heat or cool temperatures. Also, the further air must travel through the ducts, the colder or hotter one room will be while it waits to catch up.
4. Strange, Stagnant Smells in the Air
Your HVAC system should not contribute to your home’s smell and not create unpleasant ones at that. If your home has a putrid smell, odd moisture, or smells like mold, it is likely that your filter is clogged and the particles have now rested inside your home.
5. Nasty Indoor Air Quality
Those with asthma and allergies may notice this more than those without it. However, the air quality can be worse indoors when the air filters are not changed regularly. Changing your filter monthly can have an impact on the air you breathe.